Driskell and Zemke take oath of office, reiterate pledge to make education a top priority
Driskell now represents the 52nd District, which includes northern and western Washtenaw County, including Saline, Manchester, Dexter, Chelsea, Scio Township and Whitmore Lake.
"I'm honored to have the opportunity to represent the citizens of my district," Driskell said. "The voters told me that education is their top priority, and I will focus on improving our state's education funding and ensuring that our children have the tools they need to succeed."
Zemke, a graduate of Ann Arbor Public Schools and Michigan State University, echoed Driskell's sentiments on education.
"The voters of the 55th District have told me time and time again that education is our No. 1 form of economic development," Zemke said. "The University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University and Washtenaw Community College are vital to our local economy. That's why improving our state's education system is one of my top priorities as a legislator."
The most recent legislative session saw the GOP-controled Legislature cut funding for K-12 schools and higher education, including a 15 percent hit to public universities.
Zemke now represents the 55th District, which includes part of the city of Ann Arbor, part of the city of Milan, and all Ann Arbor, Pittsfield, York and Augusta townships.
He encourages residents with issues or concerns related to state government to contact his office at 517-373-1792 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Just the same, Driskell encourages residents to contact her office at 517-373-0828 or email her at email@example.com.
Zemke announced earlier this week that Brian Marl, who is Saline's new mayor, will serve as his legislative director. Marl previously served as legislative assistant to Rep. Jeff Irwin, D-Ann Arbor, and as legislative aide to former Rep. Kathy Angerer, D-Dundee.
Brad O'Conner will serve as the director of constituent relations for Zemke. O'Conner previously served as campaign manager for Zemke and Circuit Judge Carol Kuhnke.
Anna Zinkel will serve as Driskell's constituent relations aide. A University of Michigan graduate, she previously worked on Driskell's campaign as an events coordinator and finance assistant.
Washtenaw County's other two state representatives — Irwin and David Rutledge, D-Superior Township — also returned to their posts on Wednesday, as did state Sen. Rebekah Warren, D-Ann Arbor. With the exception of Republican Randy Richardville, whose Senate district cuts into lower Washtenaw County, the county is now entirely represented by Democrats in the Legislature.
Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.